Bill creates permanent financing for Everglades restoration

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Everglades restoration would get a permanent source of money under a bill nearing passage in the Florida Legislature.

The state House passed the “Legacy Florida” Act Wednesday 117-1. A similar bill in the Senate is scheduled to be heard by its final committee Thursday and could then be eligible for a vote of the full Senate.

The bill requires that some of the money from the 2014 voter-approved constitutional Amendment 1 on land preservation go for Everglades restoration projects. It says the lesser of $200 million or 25 percent of the available Amendment 1 money should go for those projects.

The Senate bill names a smaller amount but also directs additional money to protection and restoration of springs.

Environmental groups including the Everglades Foundation and Audubon Society supported the bill.